Between March 7th and 12th, two young people from Transylvania, Gabi and Máté, took on the world by the scruff and set out to explore Spain, more precisely the beautiful city of Toledo, where the author of Don Quixote lived for a short while. In contrast to Don Quixote, Gabi and Máté didn’t engage in windmill battles but participated in a very important and interesting training focusing on digital youth work.

During the training, they learned to use digital tools such as the Canva online visual editor, the Padlet digital pinboard, the YouCut video editing application, furthermore, among others they enriched their toolbox with a wide range of digital events for young people using the art of photography. Additionally, they got to meet with 20 young people from 9 countries from all around Europe with hopes of future collaborations.

„Upon our arrival day, after settling into our beautiful accommodation at the Castillo de San Servando castle (the picture below on top of the hill), we had a Spanish dinner followed by a quick introduction session with the participants and the hosting team, where we got to taste popular Spanish drinks and snacks.

The first day of the training was all about getting to know each other. We played icebreaking games and created a digital map where we marked the sending organizations of all participants, along with a short description of each contact. Alongside, we gained insight into the concept of the YouthPass, and each team presented briefly what their organization is involved in.

The second day marked the beginning of the actual work. Through several discussions, we tried to define the exact responsibilities of a digital youth worker and the toolkit necessary for navigating the online world effectively. A significant part of the morning was dedicated to a workshop on Canva visual editor, where we learned the basics of digital editing and design. We practiced by creating an infographic about each national team’s sending organization.

In the afternoon, we embarked on an exciting treasure hunt within the ancient walls of Toledo using the Actionbound digital treasure hunt app. For us, this was perhaps the most interesting part as we explored cultural and historical sites such as the statue of Don Quixote and the Toledo Cathedral. At the end of the treasure hunt, the winning teams (actually everyone) enjoyed a delicious Spanish dessert: churros dipped in hot chocolate.

On the third day, we learned the basics of video editing using the YouCut application. We were given two practice tasks. The first task was to create a short video about the goals and activities of our sending organizations individually. The second task was a team assignment where each team had to roam the streets of Toledo again, interviewing tourists and locals about a self-chosen topic, capturing it all on video which made our task a little more difficult, but in the end all the groups successfully completed the assignement.

In the afternoon, we visited the house of El Greco, where he created a substantial amount of his artworks.

The fourth day delved into online communication and activities that can be conducted in the online world. We explored how the Actionbound app works and in pairs examined each other’s organizations’ online platforms, providing each other with valuable advice on how to better manage these platforms.

We also explored the wide possibilities of photography in digital youth work, and took part in a photo challenge where we had to submit two pictures with different techniques, e.g. playing with light, colours, perspective, etc.

On this day, we had an interesting experience. As a free activity, we went to explore the sights of Toledo and visited a church that used to be just that in the past, but now it serves multiple functions, including as an entertainment venue and concert hall. It was an interesting feeling, mixed emotions of both coolness and strangeness (We could not take a picture of the church due to our surprise, so below is the cathedral of Toledo).

On the fifth and final day of the training, each team had to come up with an activity utilizing the knowledge gained during the training course. We have come up with a very cool project for next year (similar in structure to our Green It Up project, if you might know it, if not, visit the ATA platforms to find out more), where we will introduce young people to the digital tools and activities we have learned here.

Last but not least, we also organised a brainstorming session on the profiles and themes of future joint projects in collaboration between our organisations.

The rest of the day involved the final evaluation and receiving the YouthPasses, followed by bittersweet goodbyes as everyone headed back to their respective countries, big or small.

These few days in Spain, particularly in the incredibly diverse and interesting city of Toledo, were fantastically good, exciting, interesting, and educational. Anyone visiting Spain should definitely not miss out Toledo.”